• Current

  • Past

Pakui Hardware

mumok – Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien
Museumsplatz 1
June 4, 2016–October 9, 2016

View of “Pakui Hardware,” 2016.

Neringa Černiauskaitė and Ugnius Gelguda are interested in putting concepts, temporal horizons, technologies, and other disparate and apparently unaffiliated elements into relation, as is demonstrated by their collective moniker, Pakui Hardware, under which the artists from Lithuania have been operating since 2014. Pakui is, according to the artists, the speedy attendant of a Hawaiian goddess; is one of the myths of our postdigital condition.

With Vanilla Eyes, 2016, the young duo presents an extensive installation accessible to visitors in the lower level of the museum. It is fascinatingly slick and overwhelmingly organic to the same degree. Its point of departure is its title’s double meaning in English: the wordplay on “vanilla eyes” and “vanilla ice.” The consonance of the two phrases expresses the relationship between the artificial and natural worlds—which are barely distinguishable today. The difficulty of differentiating between the authentic and the synthetic, between true and false, is also expressed in the two-part installation. A Plexiglas wall divides the space down the middle; at its lower edge a blue liquid (water? nutrient fluid of some sort?) rests in an elongated container. To its left and right are similar objects: a hose of the sort used to ensure germ-free environments; triangular stands with PVC prints on which there are images drawn from NASA’s digital archives; a small arrangement consisting of computer parts, neon tubes, and ceramic sculptures in cling wrap. Pakui Hardware plays with artificially produced surfaces whose appearance draws from the natural realm—a domain into which they also regularly wander back. There is no virtual reality, because there is no actual reality—such is one of their theses. Vanilla Eyes is an incubator for exactly this, our reality.

Translated from German by Diana Reese.

Franz Thalmair